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Mealey's Patents

  • July 10, 2019

    Divided Federal Circuit Confirms Patent Board Obviousness Holding

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A majority of a Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 8 upheld the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s rejection of a patent application as obvious, but a dissenting judge criticized the board’s final written decision as “insufficient to allow for meaningful appellate review” (In re:  Jeremy Black and Patrick Hayes, No. 18-1166, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 20143).

  • July 10, 2019

    Fracking Companies Seek Ruling That They Are Not Infringing A Drilling Tool Patent

    HOUSTON — Two hydraulic fracturing companies on July 8 filed a complaint in Texas federal court seeking declaratory judgment that they have not infringed a patent for a tool used in well casings in response to a cease-and-desist letter sent to the companies from the designer of a device that is similar to the tool in question (Exacta Frac Energy Services Inc., et al. v. Paul Bernard Lee, No. 19-2459, S.D. Texas).

  • July 9, 2019

    Patent Owner: Apple Petition Suffers From ‘Fatal’ Deficiencies

    ALEXANDRIA, Va. — In a July 8 preliminary response, a patent owner urges the Patent Trial and Appeal Board to reject a petition by Apple Inc. for inter partes review (IPR) of a secure message forwarding patent (Apple Inc. v. MPH Technologies OY, No. IPR2019-00821, PTAB).

  • July 9, 2019

    Hydraulic Fracturing Company: Well Services Operators Infringe Patents Knowingly

    HOUSTON — A hydraulic fracturing well services company on July 3 sued two other well services companies in Texas federal court, alleging that they knowingly infringe on patents related to a fracking fluid pumping system (U.S. Well Services Inc. v. TOPS Well Services LLC, et al., No. 19-225, S.D. Texas).

  • July 9, 2019

    Despite Misconduct, Panel Denies Sanctions In Patent Appeal

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Although agreeing with an appellee that a patent owner’s appeal, “as argued,” of a dismissal for improper venue was frivolous, a Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 5 ruled that “we do not believe . . . such misconduct warrants sanctions under these circumstances” (Westech Aerosol Corporation v. 3M Company, et al., No. 18-1699, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 20055).

  • July 8, 2019

    Owner Defends Cyber Threat Intelligence Patent Before Patent Board

    ALEXANDRIA, Va. — In a July 5 patent owner reply, Centripetal Networks Inc. told the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that it should reject allegations of obviousness asserted by Cisco Systems Inc. (Cisco Systems Inc. v. Centripetal Networks Inc., No. IPR2018-01512, PTAB).

  • July 8, 2019

    University’s Code Patent Is Invalid, Apple Asserts In Federal Circuit Appeal

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In confirming the patentability of various claims of an invention covering error-correcting codes, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board committed “a series of legal errors” and its finding of a lack of motivation to combine prior art references “is unsupported by substantial evidence,” Apple Inc. maintained July 1 in an appellant brief filed with the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Apple Inc. v. California Institute of Technology, Nos. 19-1580, -1581, Fed. Cir.).

  • July 3, 2019

    Deeply Divided Federal Circuit Denies Rehearing In Patent Eligibility Row

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Efforts by a patent licensee to overturn a February 2019 determination of patent ineligibility by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals were unsuccessful on July 3, when a majority of the court voted not to rehear en banc a dispute over a method of diagnosing certain neurological disorders; the denial of rehearing spawned eight separate writings by the judges, comprising four concurrences and four dissents (Athena Diagnostics Inc. v. Mayo Collaborative Services LLC, No. 17-2508, Fed. Cir.).

  • July 3, 2019

    Federal Circuit Upholds Board In Cross-Appeal Of Inter Partes Reviews

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a July 2 ruling, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals left intact findings by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board in three inter partes reviews (IPRs) that various claims of a Finjan computer antivirus patent are patentable, while others are not (Palo Alto Networks Inc. v. Finjan Inc., Nos. 2017-2543, -2623, -2047, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 19752).

  • July 3, 2019

    Patent Board Won’t Rehear Decision Denying Inter Partes Review

    ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A petitioner on July 2 failed to persuade the Patent Trial and Appeal Board to revisit their March 29 decision not to institute inter partes review of a casket patent (Matthews International Corporation v. Vandor Corporation, No. IPR2018-01693, PTAB).

  • July 2, 2019

    Patent Owner Responds To Microsoft Petition For Inter Partes Review

    ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Assertions by Microsoft Corp. that a patent relating to image capture is not entitled to its claimed priority date of 1999 fail, the patent owner told the Patent Trial and Appeal Board in a July 1 preliminary patent owner response (Microsoft Corp. v. Kewazinga Corp., No. IPR2019-00872, PTAB).

  • July 2, 2019

    Federal Circuit Affirms: Prior Art Not Antedated By Patent Owner

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A final written decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that two design patents relating to baby play yards are unpatentable as obvious was upheld July 2 by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals (Kolcraft Enterprises Inc. v. Graco Children’s Products Inc., Nos. 2018-1259, -1260, Fed. Cir.).

  • July 1, 2019

    Panel:  Patent Board Obviousness Analysis Applied Too Narrowly

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A rejection by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of a challenge to a pre-lit artificial tree patent was vacated and remanded by the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on July 1 (Polygroup Limited MCO v. Willis Electric Co. Ltd., No. 18-2137, Fed. Cir.).

  • July 1, 2019

    Federal Circuit Upholds Some Rejections, Vacates Others In Patent Row

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A panel of the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals June 28 found that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board “failed to make necessary factual findings” when rejecting three patent claims relating to improved communication over the Internet (VirnetX Inc. v. Cisco Systems Inc., No. 18-1751, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 19444).

  • July 1, 2019

    Rulings On Experts, Judgment For Microsoft Affirmed By Panel In Patent Row

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A Delaware federal court in a patent infringement suit against Microsoft Corp. properly excluded one expert’s survey and another’s opinions for the plaintiff company and did not err in awarding Microsoft summary judgment of no indirect infringement, the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals decided June 28 (Parallel Networks Licensing, LLC v. Microsoft Corporation, No. 18-1120, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 19442).

  • June 28, 2019

    Trade Secret, Patent Experts Vetted By Federal Judge In Wireless Technology Row

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on June 25 trimmed proposed expert testimony from both sides in a patent infringement and trade secrets misappropriation suit over a project by Google LLC to provide wireless services through the use of balloons in the stratosphere (Space Data Corporation v. Alphabet Inc., et al., No. 5:16-cv-3260, N.D. Calif., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 106297).

  • June 28, 2019

    Citing Settlement, Patent Owner Asks Federal Circuit To Vacate Judgment

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a June 24 nonconfidential opening appellant brief, Amgen Inc. urges the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to put an end to a patent case “that neither party wants to litigate” (Amgen Inc. v. Watson Laboratories Inc., et al., No. 19-1650, Fed. Cir.).

  • June 28, 2019

    Panel Upholds $21M Award In Satellite Communication Patent Row

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on June 26 agreed with a Texas federal judge that a jury verdict of willful patent infringement was supported by the evidence and left intact that jury’s award of $21,075,750 in damages (Elbit Systems Land and C4I Ltd., et al. v. Hughes Network Systems LLC, No. 18-1910, Fed. Cir., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 18852).

  • June 28, 2019

    Appellant Tells Panel Patent Board Erroneously Construed Terms

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a June 10 appellant brief, Cook Group Inc. urges the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to direct the Patent Trial and Appeal Board to revisit a final written decision in an inter partes review (IPR) that confirmed as patentable five claims of a medical device patent (Cook Group Inc. v. Boston Scientific Scimed Inc., Nos. 19-1413, -1422, Fed. Cir.).

  • June 27, 2019

    Amici Debate PTO’s Entitlement To Attorney Fees In Supreme Court Patent Case

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a June 25 amicus curiae brief, the New York Intellectual Property Law Association (NYIPLA) tells the U.S. Supreme Court that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) was not entitled to an award of attorney fees, despite prevailing in a lawsuit brought by a patent applicant, because Section 145 of the Patent Act does not explicitly provide for such an award (Laura Peter v. NantKwest Inc., No. 18-801, U.S. Sup.).

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